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Testimonials

In the various roles he has undertaken through the years, Val J. Halamandaris has been a singular driving force behind the policy and program initiatives resulting in the recognition of home health care as a viable alternative to institutionalization. His dedication to consumer advocacy, which enhances the quality of life and dignity of those receiving home health care, merits VNA HealthCare Group’s highest recognition and deepest respect. 

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VNA HealthCare Group

I have the highest respect for them, especially for the nurses, aides and therapists, who devote their lives to caring for people with disabilities, the infirm and dying Americans.  There are few more noble professions.

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President Barack Obama

Home health care agencies do such a wonderful job in this country helping people to be able to remain at home and allowing them to receive services

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U.S. Senator Debbie Stabenow (D-MI) Chair, Democratic Steering and Outreach Committee

Home care is a combination of compassion and efficiency.  It is less expensive than institutional care...but at the same time it is a more caring, human, intimate experience, and therefore it has a greater human element...it’s a big mistake not to try to maximize it and find ways to give people the home care option over either nursing homes, hospitals or other institutions

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Former Speaker of the U.S. House of Representatives Newt Gingrich (R-GA)

Medicaid covers long-term care, but only for low-income families.  And Medicare only pays for care that is connected to a hospital discharge....our health care system must cover these vital services...[and] we should promote home-based care, which most people prefer, instead of the institutional care that we emphasize now.

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Former U.S. Senator Majority Leader Tom Daschle (D-CD)

We need incentives to...keep people in home health care settings...It’s dramatically less expensive than long term care.

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U.S. Senator John McCain (R-AZ)

 

Home care is clearly the wave of the future. It’s clearly where patients want to be cared for. I come from an ethnic family and when a member of our family is severely ill, we would never consider taking them to get institutional care. That’s true of many families for both cultural and financial reasons. If patients have a choice of where they want to be cared for, where it’s done the right way, they choose home.

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Donna Shalala, former Secretary of Health and Human Services

A couple of years ago, I spent a little bit of time with the National Association for Home Care & Hospice and its president, Val J. Halamandaris, and I was just blown away. What impressed me so much was that they talked about what they do as opposed to just the strategies of how to deal with Washington or Sacramento or Albany or whatever the case may be. Val is a fanatic about care, and it comes through in every way known to mankind. It comes through in the speakers he invites to their events; it comes through in all the stuff he shares.

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Tom Peters, author of In Search of Excellence

Val’s home care organization brings thousands of caregivers together into a dynamic organization that provides them with valuable resources and tools to be even better in their important work. He helps them build self-esteem, which leads to self-motivation.

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Mike Vance, former Dean of Disney and author of Think Out of the Box

Val is one of the greatest advocates for seniors in America. He goes beyond the call of duty every time.

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Arthur S. Flemming, former Secretary of Health, Education, and Welfare

Val has brought the problems, the challenges, and the opportunities out in the open for everyone to look at. He is a visionary pointing the direction for us. 

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Margaret (Peg) Cushman, Professor of Nursing and former President of the Visiting Nurses Association

Although Val has chosen to stay in the background, he deserves much of the credit for what was accomplished both at the U.S. Senate Special Committee on Aging, where he was closely associated with me and at the House Select Committee on Aging, where he was Congressman Claude Pepper’s senior counsel and closest advisor. He put together more hearings on the subject of aging, wrote more reports, drafted more bills, and had more influence on the direction of events than anyone before him or since.

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Frank E. Moss, former U.S. Senator

Val’s most important contribution is pulling together all elements of home health care and being able to organize and energize the people involved in the industry.

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Frank E. Moss, former U.S. Senator

Anyone working on health care issues in Congress knows the name Val J. Halamandaris.

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Kathleen Gardner Cravedi, former Staff Director of the House Select Committee on Aging

Without your untiring support and active participation, the voices of people advocating meaningful and compassionate health care reform may not have been heard by national leaders.

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Michael Sullivan, Former Executive Director, Indiana Association for Home Care

All of us have been members of many organizations and NAHC is simply the best there is. NAHC aspires to excellence in every respect; its staff has been repeatedly honored as the best in Washington; the organization lives by the highest values and has demonstrated a passionate interest in the well-being of patients and providers.

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Elaine Stephens, Director of Home Care of Steward Home Care/Steward Health Systems and former NAHC C

Home care increasingly is one of the basic building blocks in the developing system of long-term care.  On both economic and recuperative bases, home health care will continue to grow as an essential service for individuals, for families and for the community as a whole.

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Former U.S. Senator Olympia Snowe (R-ME)

NCOA is excited to be part of this great event and honored to have such influential award winners in the field of aging.

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National Council of Aging

Health care at home…is something we need more of, not less of.  Let us make a commitment to preventive and long-term care.  Let us encourage home care as an alternative to nursing homes and give folks a little help to have their parents there.

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Former President Bill Clinton

CMS Revises Medicare Revalidation Policies

March 16, 2015 02:00 PM

The Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) has issued change Request (CR) 9011 which updates the Medicare Program Integrity Manual on policies related to provider and supplier revalidations.

Sections 15.29.1-15.29.10 of the manual are new and include policies that outline the process and timing for revalidations and subsequent deactivations.

According to the revised policy, CMS will request that providers respond to a revalidation request within 60 days of sending the revalidation letter. If there is no response by day 60, the contractor is to contact the provider between day 60-70. The contractor will make two attempts to contact the provider by telephone. A no answer does not count as a contact, but the contractor may leave a voice message if a phone number is left for a contact directly at the contractor site.

If there is no response to the revalidation request by day 71-75 of sending the revalidation letter, the provider is placed in a “pend” status. The contractor informs the provider of the “pend” status via phone or mail. The method of notification is determined by the contractor. If communication is via phone, two attempts will be made, and if there is no response (voice mail not permitted), a letter will be sent.

While a provider will not receive any payments or remittance reports while in a “pend” status, this action in not applied to the shared systems. Therefore, providers will be able to order or refer services for Medicare beneficiaries. Home health agencies that accept orders from physicians while in this “pend” status will be able to bill Medicare and receive payment for services. 

Individual group members who have assigned their benefits to one or more groups are not placed in a “pend” status. Rather, they will be deactivated between day 71-75 for no response to a revalidation request. Physicians who assign their benefits to a group or groups commonly order home health services. Therefore, agencies should be aware that some physicians they work with might have a shorter time interval between a revalidation request and deactivation than other providers.

Providers that are either placed in a “pend” status or deactivated between day 71-75,  and do not respond to the revalidation request by day 120-125  from the date the revalidation request was sent, will have their enrollment record  deactivated. The provider transaction access number (PTAN) and effective date shall remain the same if the revalidation application was received prior to 120 days after the date of deactivation. If the revalidation is received more than 120 days after deactivation, a new PTAN and effective date will be issued. The time between the end date of the old PTAN and the issuance of a new PTAN will be reflected as a gap in the provider’s enrollment record.

In the CR, CMS states that the contractor shall not require any provider/supplier with billing privileges that have been deactivated to obtain a new State survey or accreditation as a condition of revalidation.

The current regulation §424.540(b)(3)(i) requires a home health agency (HHA) with Medicare billing privileges that have been deactivated to obtain an initial State survey or accreditation by an approved accreditation organization before its Medicare billing privileges can be reactivated, including deactivations related to revalidations.

The National Association for Home Care & Hospice received confirmation from CMS that HHAs would not be required to obtain a State survey or accreditation by an approved accreditation organization if they had been deactivated related to CMS’ revalidation policies. However, in any other case, if the HHA was deactivated CMS would need to follow the regulation requirements.   

CMS posted on their web site a list of all providers and suppliers who are currently enrolled in the Medicare (ordering and referring list).  The site also contains a list of physician and non-physician providers who have an initial application pending. This pending status list is not the same as the “pend” status related to revalidations. That list is not available to the public. The site  also contains a list of providers and suppliers that been sent revalidation letters and a list of providers and suppliers that will be sent revalidation letters within the next 60 days.

The CR also provides information on CMS’ policies related to the process and response timelines for revalidations when additional information has been requested by the contractor. In addition, a new section has been added that addresses punctuation and special characters in the National Provider Identifiers (NPI); and the model letters contractors send to providers to request a revalidation and associated correspondence have been revised. 

To view the CR click here.

 

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